Rites of Passage

Rites of Passage,Gagosian Britannia Street

Gagosian presents Rites of Passage at the Britannia Street gallery. Curated by Péjú Oshin, this exhibition features work by nineteen contemporary artists who share a history of migration.

Rites of Passage explores the idea of “liminal space,” a coinage of anthropologist Arnold van Gennep (1873–1957). In his 1909 book, after which the exhibition is titled, Van Gennep was among the first to observe that the transitional events of birth, puberty, marriage, and death are marked by ceremonies with a ritual function that transcends cultural boundaries. Highlighting this phenomenon in physical, mental, and spiritual arenas, Oshin’s exhibition challenges linear narratives through works in a variety of mediums, which fill Gagosian’s expansive Britannia Street gallery.

Rites of Passage is structured in correspondence with liminality’s three stages: separation, transition, and return. Each of these phases addresses the act of movement, not only through individual experience, but also in the broader context of community. The exhibition examines the status of postcolonial Black identity, specifically the “triple consciousness” experienced by members of the African diaspora when encountering counterparts who identify with local majority populations. The artists in the exhibition are further grouped together according to themes of tradition, spirituality, and place.


Tunji Adeniyi-Jones
Phoebe Boswell
Adelaide Damoah
Femi Dawkins
Victor Ehikhamenor
Mary Evans
Ayesha Feisal
Enam Gbewonyo
Elsa James

Sahara Longe
Manyaku Mashilo
Emily Moore
Nengi Omuku
Patrick Quarm
Alexandria Smith
Sharon Walters
Michaela Yearwood-Dan

Duration 16 March 2023 - 29 April 2023
Times Monday–Friday 10–6
Cost Free
Venue Gagosian (Britannia Street)
Address 6-24 Britannia Street, London, WC1X 9JD
Contact / london@gagosian.com / www.gagosian.com